Lambussie, Ghana, March 2018
Working together for peace in Lambussie
Purdue Peace Project Associate Director of Research and Operations Jasmine R. Linabary recently returned from a trip to Ghana. During the trip, she, along with Ghana Country Director Yaganoma Baatuolkuu, paid a visit to the PPP’s newest local peace committee in the Upper West Region.
Youth in the Lambussie district in the Upper West Region of Ghana are working together to promote peace.
These youth comprise the Lambussie Youth for Peace and Development (LYPAD), a local peace committee that emerged in 2017 after a series of community meetings facilitated by the Purdue Peace Project (PPP). These meetings were held in collaboration with a local peace committee in a neighboring district called the Nandom Youth for Peace and Development (NYPAD), which has worked to prevent violence around a variety of causes of conflict since 2015. The meetings involved conversations about strategies and solutions to address inter-ethnic conflict and land disputes both within and between the two districts.
With the support of PPP, LYPAD began a series of activities in early 2018 to promote peace in the Lambussie district including radio talk shows and outreach programs at area schools. Since youth are often mobilized for violence, targeting schools was seen as a way to help reduce the likelihood of violence.
During the visit, we spoke with LYPAD members about their activities and the initial outcomes of their efforts. In particular from LYPAD’s outreach programs in secondary schools, students have formed peace clubs to continue conversations about preventing violence. Additionally, LYPAD has observed improved relations between members of different ethnic groups, including that people are socializing together in ways they have not in the past at community events as well as within their daily lives. Members of the community are also seeking LYPAD members out when conflict arises.
As part of the visit, we also joined LYPAD to pay visits to local traditional and governmental leaders, who expressed appreciation of LYPAD’s efforts to promote peace in the area.
LYPAD members are now working on next steps to continue their efforts, specifically in relation to preventing violence related to inter-ethnic tensions that have contributed to land disputes in the area.
Learn more about the Purdue Peace Project’s work in Ghana by visiting: https://cla.purdue.edu/ppp/projects/ghana.html.
-Author Jasmine R. Linabary is the associate director of research and operations for the PPP.